FL – A limitless passion for sharing knowledge and strengthening the
technical skills base in the Bay County area has local company Hive
Technologies and the CareerSource Gulf Coast Board working together, keenly
focused on the mission.
Hive Technologies' Rick Hurst, Contributing Executive Officer, compares the
local technology climate to the old "chicken or the egg" story.
"As a community, we can’t attract technology companies because we don’t
have the tech resource pool to support their needs," Hurst said. "On
the other hand, tech resources and new tech grads don’t stay in Panama City
because we lack those jobs."
CareerSource Executive Director Kim Bodine agrees. "We are heavy in
tourism-related jobs," Bodine said. "Some other sectors are stable or
growing, but we are certainly lagging in terms of technology-based employment
answer? Grow the technology skills in the area - and that's something both Hive
Technologies and CareerSource Gulf Coast most certainly agree upon. So
CareerSource opened its doors to Hive, providing free space for technology
classes. Hive offers the classes at no cost.
"Hive Technologies is working to address both the chicken and the egg, if
you will," Hurst said. "We chose Panama City as the home for our tech
company, and we're focused on organically growing a tech resource pool through
Hive School. We're a software engineering company, that's true. But we're
more importantly a company that believes in growing with the community by
providing education, mentorship and opportunities. Supporting this area -
that's first and foremost."
Hive Technologies, as Hurst explains, is built on the premise of its name: The
ability to come together as a community and create something great. That's
what's happening, by any measure. Within two days of posting information about
the free technology classes at the CareerSource Gulf Coast Job Center, the
seats were full, and a waiting list had formed.
"Our goal is always to make our communities stronger every day,"
Bodine said. "The Hive Technologies program clearly addresses that goal.
We are fortunate to have this company in our region, and grateful for the
passion Rick brings to his students."
With 10 years of experience as a software engineer, and eight years as a
professor at Florida State University, Hurst brings a wealth of talent to the
table. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in software engineering, a Master
of Science degree in software engineering, and is working toward a PhD in
cybersecurity and privacy.
classes taught at CareerSource Gulf Coast, however, are delivered in a way
meant not to intimidate. Beginners are enrolled, and are excelling. Currently,
courses offered are Introduction to Programming and Introduction to Java. The
future will bring more community opportunities.
"I love to teach," Hurst said.
"Some people love to fish, some love to hunt. I love to teach. I can think
of nothing more gratifying than seeing the light-bulb moment of a student, and
being a part of the equation."
CareerSource Gulf Coast offices are operated in Bay, Gulf and Franklin
Counties, with the primary Job Center located in Panama City at 625 Highway
231. CareerSource Gulf Coast earned the 2013-14 top ranking in job placements
as part of Governor Rick Scott's goal to put more people to work. Visit www.careersourcegc.com to learn more
about professional workforce development and job placement services, all
offered at no charge.